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Eragrostis spectabilis is often confused with:
Eragrostis curvula Eragrostis curvula
Plants that fill a similar niche:
Viola pedata Viola pedata
Panicum amarum Panicum amarum Elliott var. amarulum
Viola sororia Viola papilionacea

Purple Love Grass Eragrostis spectabilis

Other Common Name(s):

Previously known as:

  • Eragrostis geyeri
Phonetic Spelling
er-uh-GROS-tis speck-TAB-ih-liss
Description

Purple love grass is a small, perennial, well-behaved ornamental grass in the Poaceae (grass family).  This warm-season grass is native to central and eastern North America and is found naturally in sandy fields, along roadsides, and in woodlands. It spreads slowly by rhizomes.  

Plant it in open areas well-drained slightly dry soil in the full sun. It is tolerant of hot dry conditions.  Its airy pink seed heads float gracefully above the dense clumping foliage.  

Plant in small groups or mass plan in a border, meadow, or native plant garden.  It can be mowed a few times a year if it is being used as a lawn alternative that is exposed to light foot traffic.  It will not handle heavy foot traffic.  In the winter it will go dormant.  

Insects, Diseases, and Other Plant Problems:  Aphids, leaf spot, and spittlebugs are occasional pest problems.

 

 

 

 

See this plant in the following landscape:
Cultivars / Varieties:
Tags:
#heat tolerant#drought tolerant#slow growing#fine texture#lawn alternative#low maintenance#mass planting#flower arrangements#NC native#warm-season grass#naturalizes#border planting#cutting garden#arrangements#clumping#billowy#native ornamental grass#dried arrangements#poor soils tolerant#larval host plant#food source herbage#piedmont mountains UPL#native sedge#small group plantings#bird friendly#food source hard mast fruit#mammals#foot traffic tolerant#butterfly friendly#Coastal FACU#roadside#Audubon#dense growth#lawn alternative full sun
 
Cultivars / Varieties:
Tags:
#heat tolerant#drought tolerant#slow growing#fine texture#lawn alternative#low maintenance#mass planting#flower arrangements#NC native#warm-season grass#naturalizes#border planting#cutting garden#arrangements#clumping#billowy#native ornamental grass#dried arrangements#poor soils tolerant#larval host plant#food source herbage#piedmont mountains UPL#native sedge#small group plantings#bird friendly#food source hard mast fruit#mammals#foot traffic tolerant#butterfly friendly#Coastal FACU#roadside#Audubon#dense growth#lawn alternative full sun
  • Attributes:
    Genus:
    Eragrostis
    Species:
    spectabilis
    Family:
    Poaceae
    Life Cycle:
    Perennial
    Recommended Propagation Strategy:
    Division
    Seed
    Country Or Region Of Origin:
    S. Canada to NE. Mexico
    Dimensions:
    Height: 0 ft. 8 in. - 1 ft. 2 in.
    Width: 0 ft. 10 in. - 1 ft. 4 in.
  • Whole Plant Traits:
    Plant Type:
    Native Plant
    Ornamental Grasses and Sedges
    Habit/Form:
    Clumping
    Growth Rate:
    Slow
    Maintenance:
    Low
    Texture:
    Fine
  • Cultural Conditions:
    Light:
    Full sun (6 or more hours of direct sunlight a day)
    Soil Texture:
    Clay
    Loam (Silt)
    Sand
    Soil Drainage:
    Good Drainage
    Moist
    Occasionally Dry
    Available Space To Plant:
    12 inches-3 feet
    NC Region:
    Coastal
    Mountains
    Piedmont
    USDA Plant Hardiness Zone:
    5a, 5b, 6b, 6a, 7a, 7b, 8a, 8b, 9b, 9a
  • Fruit:
    Fruit Color:
    Brown/Copper
    Pink
    Purple/Lavender
    Display/Harvest Time:
    Fall
    Fruit Type:
    Caryopsis
    Fruit Length:
    < 1 inch
    Fruit Description:
    Caryopsis dark brown .8 mm long as the seeds mature they dry and fall off the plant and are blown around by the wind. Fruits are available September-November and are pink and purple in color.
  • Flowers:
    Flower Color:
    Brown/Copper
    Pink
    Purple/Lavender
    Red/Burgundy
    Flower Inflorescence:
    Panicle
    Flower Value To Gardener:
    Good Cut
    Good Dried
    Showy
    Flower Bloom Time:
    Fall
    Summer
    Flower Description:
    Messy, loose appearance inflorescence is a panicle. Appears in late summer to fall (August-October)then appears as reddish-purple clouds and fades to soft brown.
  • Leaves:
    Leaf Color:
    Green
    Leaf Feel:
    Rough
    Leaf Value To Gardener:
    Showy
    Deciduous Leaf Fall Color:
    Brown/Copper
    Red/Burgundy
    Leaf Type:
    Sheath
    Leaf Arrangement:
    Rosulate
    Leaf Shape:
    Acicular
    Hairs Present:
    Yes
    Leaf Length:
    > 6 inches
    Leaf Width:
    < 1 inch
    Leaf Description:
    Dull green hairy on both sides flat, up to 10" long 3/8" wide
  • Stem:
    Stem Is Aromatic:
    No
  • Landscape:
    Landscape Location:
    Meadow
    Naturalized Area
    Landscape Theme:
    Drought Tolerant Garden
    Native Garden
    Design Feature:
    Border
    Mass Planting
    Small groups
    Attracts:
    Small Mammals
    Songbirds
    Resistance To Challenges:
    Black Walnut
    Drought
    Foot Traffic
    Heat
    Pollution
    Poor Soil
    Salt